Cop death reignites po­lice safety con­cerns

Daily News - - FRONT PAGE - ANELISA KUBHEKA [email protected]

A TAXI driver is ex­pected to ap­pear in court soon on charges of cul­pa­ble homi­cide, reck­less and neg­li­gent driv­ing, at­tempted mur­der and at­tempt­ing to flee the scene of an ac­ci­dent fol­low­ing the death of a metro po­lice of­fi­cer who was struck and killed by a taxi in eManz­im­toti on Fri­day.

In­spec­tor John Dey­sel, 59, had been try­ing to stop the taxi when it hit him out­side the Gal­le­ria Mall. The 22-yearold taxi driver was ar­rested.

The SA Mu­nic­i­pal Work­ers’ Union said it would meet with its shop stew­ards to dis­cuss safety mat­ters fol­low­ing Dey­sel’s death.

Pro­vin­cial sec­re­tary Jaycee Ncanana said the is­sue of of­fi­cers’ safety dur­ing road­blocks had been raised pre­vi­ously and the union was given an as­sur­ance that its mem­bers were safe.

“We will meet with shop stew­ards to dis­cuss a way for­ward when it comes to safety – maybe look­ing at re­fresher cour­ses for mem­bers,” he said.

Ncanana said their meet­ing would in­clude look­ing at where im­prove­ments could be made in en­sur­ing the safety of of­fi­cers.

“We have to sit down with the em­ployer and make sug­ges­tions on how our mem­bers can be safer out there,” Ncanana said.

Dey­sel’s wife of nearly 21 years, Rina, said he had been with the metro po­lice ser­vice for a to­tal of 34 years, 23 of which he had served with the Dur­ban metro po­lice.

She said their lit­tle girl, Jo­hane, who would turn two on Fe­bru­ary 26, was his world and they would have cel­e­brated their 21st wed­ding an­niver­sary in April.

“He was the proud­est po­lice­man and was pas­sion­ate about his job. We bat­tled for so long to have a child and when this lit­tle body ar­rived, she be­came every­thing to him.

In the evenings, when he was work­ing the night shift, I would phone him and he would speak to her,” she said.

Rina said she felt like she was in a Fri­day night.

“See­ing them at my house, com­ing like that, is ev­ery po­lice wife’s night­mare.

It’s like I’m in a dream and still need to wake up. All I am try­ing to do is think about my hus­band and the mem­o­ries we shared so I can feel close to him,” she said.

Rina said she would col­lect all the news­pa­per ar­ti­cles writ­ten about her hus­band, who would have cel­e­brated his 60th birth­day on Fe­bru­ary 19, for their daugh­ter to read when she is older.

Metro po­lice spokesper­son Su­per­in­ten­dent Glen Ndlovu ad­vised peo­ple to re­frain from mak­ing neg­a­tive com­ments on so­cial me­dia plat­forms, based on video footage of the in­ci­dent on Face­book yes­ter­day.

Ndlovu said Dey­sel flashed his torch a few times for the taxi to stop, but the driver did not slow down.

“In­stead, in the video he veered to the left and tried to squeeze be­tween the of­fi­cer and two ve­hi­cles stand­ing off to his left,” Ndlovu said.

In­spec­tor John Dey­sel, 59, had been try­ing to stop the taxi when it hit him out­side the Gal­le­ria Mall.night­mare when metro of­fi­cers came to their home to tell her of his death on

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